water value estimates

The Marginal Economic Value of Streamflow From National Forests

Year: 
2004
Abstract: 

Changes in forest overstory lead to changes in runoff. This report estimates what such changes in runoff are worth to society using two sources of information: economicvaluation studies and, most importantly, water market transactions. Evidence from over2,000 transactions that occurred in the western U.S. over the past 14 years (1990 through 003) was examined to learn who is selling to whom and for what purpose, how muchwater is involved, and how much it is selling for. Roughly half of the transactions were sales of water rights; the rest were water leases. The transactions show that the price ofwater is highly variable both within and between western states, reflecting the localized nature of the factors that affect water prices. Ideally, if water market prices or valuationstudies are to be used to help determine the marginal value of water from specific areas, such as national forests, information from local markets or local studies should be used.Lacking site-specific value information, only rough estimates are possible.

Author(s): 

Thomas C. Brown

Contact: 

Thomas C. BrownRocky Mountain Research StationU.S. Forest ServiceFort Collins, Colorado

Notes: 
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Economic values of freshwater in the United States

Volume: 
Final Report, October 1995
Year: 
1995
Abstract: 

This report presents nearly 500 water value estimates for four withdrawal uses (domestic, irrigation, industrial processing, and thermoelectric power generation) and four instream uses (hydropower, recreation/fish and wildlife habitat, navigation, and waste disposal). The first section discusses important caveats for interpreting the data and the relevance of water values for achieving efficient use of the resource. Tables and graphs are used to summarize and help interpret the water-value data that have been converted to constant 1994 dollars. Section 3 presents the data by geographic region to illustrate how the values within a region vary among uses. Section 4 presents the data for individual water uses to illustrate how the values for specific uses vary within each of the 18water resources regions that comprise the conterminous United States. Information such as the location, year, and methodology used to derive each of the values are presented in the appendices along with each of the water value estimates. The data are organized by water resources region in Appendix B and by type of use in Appendix C.

Author(s): 

Frederick, K., VandenBerg, T., Hanson, J.

Contact: 

Resources for the Future, 1616 P street, NW,, Washington, DC

Notes: 
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